Sunday, July 21, 2019

summertime guest photographer -- a treat for me

post #441
       Yesterday (Saturday) I had planned to check out the famed outdoors arts and craft show that happens now every July here in Elliott County -- fondly and proudly called "Minnie Adkins Day".  Minnie is the kind who breaks any glass ceiling in her way, and she is so supportive of everyone else's work and talents.  She is a Kentucky treasure. We all win because she has persisted!
       But, true confession, I got involved with a project at the house this morning, which caused me to forget the time, and I missed the whole thing! I had planned to post photos from there today, but instead I will be including a photo or two in a future post, when I can round some up from other artists in attendance.  I sure hope the heat didn't make anyone sick.  Water, water, water!
      However, I soon realized I now had a great excuse to feature some of the photos my daughter makes, with her cell phone.  She has a wonderful eye. I love her work. I knew she had made some really good ones this week. I am proud to share some of them in this post. Thank you, Rebecca!!

the family garlic crop

the well

notice the companion ants on these peonies
Oh, the light, at the pond! I love this photo.

standing on the edge

Memories of early April:
How to pick strawberries AND keep at least one hand clean enough to make a photo....


Oops, I'm caught in the act.....

a jack-in-the-pulpit along the creek on a really good day

returning home after time in the woods

a special visitor to the house, attached to the outside -- a happy surprise all around

Again, thank you, Rebecca, and I love you -- from your mom

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Hay, I'm back, with some bales and rows from my neighborhood

post #440
         This spring two facts converged to keep me from one of my very favorite photo opportunities.  For some reason I can't quite explain, I absolutely love making hay with my photos -- or rather, making photos of the hay. It is a spring ritual for me, and this year I didn't get to do it. So I promised myself that I would at least post a whole bunch of hay photos from other years.
        The reasons I missed out this year were, of course, that I broke my foot in late April and, in addition, we had so much rain in eastern Kentucky that most of the mowing of the fields was delayed for at least 6 weeks. To top it off, I was away the week the sun finally came out for several days in a row, when everyone then mowed like crazy.
       Anyway, here are some of my photos from recent years.  The first ten images show the same field from varying views, years and perspectives.  I love the variety. 


a morning drying out of 'ye olde wings'

golden day

   up close and personal

In the back yard

before the mowing
hay left over, looking baleful.....
a field that didn't get mowed that year


May we remember the young children who have been cruelly separated from their families, along our southern border.  This situation is one we should hold our politicians accountable for until the end of time; it is unconscionable. I don't think we should ever forget what these kids have had to and continue to endure.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Home again

post #439
            Well, I am almost home, but I wanted to be sure to send out this post before the day is done. I have been driving in the central time zone -- where it seems very flat compared to my sweet hills and mountains. 
            Today I am just sharing a few recent photos, some by friends. I still can't risk doing my usual "Forget all else while making a photo" bit since my healing foot still needs some TLC to get back to where it used to be. It felt very strange to be in a new place for 6 days and do hardly any photos. We were on a college campus and a TRAIN runs through it. Daily!! Slowly!! How cool is that!  (I do realize not everyone loves trains like I do.)

           However, I'm ready to move on from "no new photos".  For now, though, here are the few images from my recent adventures. The first four are from my overnight, en route, with Amy, my college roommate in our junior year. It was a rare visit, and I'm so glad I could do it.  I loved the mug with my beautiful breakfast, and then there are her two cats who checked me out pretty carefully, Such wonderful tall trees are along her street (an old neighborhood in St. Louis) and her flowers are behind the house. Amy keeps up with so much, including her job - she is the choral director of the St. Louis Orchestra!

        The next morning in St. Louis I rendez-vous-ed with a young woman from Bolivia who was also headed to the conference.  Vanessa was wonderful company, and she even took some photos of the flooded Mississippi river as we drove 5 hours north to Iowa.  This is one of her photos.  Beside the fact that there was nowhere to pull over to make a photo, we were trying to get to the conference with time for a meal before the evening start of the conference. So I drove, and she caught the image as I kept moving along.  (We also had to pass up an opportunity to explore Hannibel, MO and all the Mark Twain stories -- and tourists -- there.) I can share more of Vanessa's story at a later time.

       This is really practically the only photo I made at the conference, made during my walk to breakfast!  I enjoyed an air conditioned dorm room, but I did meet many of the folks tenting outside during our week, at least the ones who shared our restroom.

          I may add a photo later, and comments from the workshop I was part of, but in the meantime, thanks as always for taking a look on my blog.

Sunday, June 30, 2019


post #438
        I am being hammered by reality. I won't get a blog done today, for two reasons. First, I am away from home, headed to a week long conference, and in addition I am giving someone a ride there,  from where I am as I write this (St. Louis) to Iowa, about a 6 hour drive. Second, I had to upgrade my cell phone before even leaving Kentucky, and it is not yet totally set up, and I should be dealing with that before I get to be creative with a post. It would be fairest for anyone who checks my blog this week to say that I won't do another post this week, but I will for sure next Sunday. There are stories. There are photos. There is our world to celebrate and care for. And there are times for taking realities into consideration. 
        I thank all my readers/viewers for sharing my various enthusiasms over these seven years, and counting.  

Sunday, June 23, 2019

the wider world

post # 437
       It has been weeks since I've said much about the world outside the downstairs of my house or the physical therapy location.  However, while I have been busy healing from a small break in my left foot, I've not stopped being concerned about all that is evolving in the public arena. Being preoccupied is not an excuse for accepting the current chaos threatening our perceptions of what is normal.  I stay somewhere between brooding and distress. I do know that history will not be kind to non-action at a time like this.
         I have not accepted that anyone could deny that we are facing global consequences for what is happening with the world's climate. To not even encourage all the research possible about what could happen is folly. What has become of our backbones, to our brains, or to our souls to not take on this challenge. I live in coal country, and yet even programs that take on how we could do better don't even get a chance of support in the current government. I grieve for what we are ignoring despite our children and grandchildren whom we all supposedly love and care for. 
         In addition, I have absolutely no way to understand the separation of families at our southern border. Those young children are paying a huge price for the inability of grownups to communicate and do the work of compromise with compassion. It is seriously evil that records aren't even being kept about where the kids end up and whom their parents are. If nothing else, this is again cruel behavior by so-called adults bent on bullying and domination, and, might I add, greed.
          Of course I like many others am appalled by the constant lies from the president, and others, and his constant need for attention.  He seems willing to keep up constant chaos in order to feel that his life has meaning. I have met other people who also have this disorder, but they are not in a position to inflict so many people. For example, there is no way the discussion of how many people would be injured this week by some retaliation by our military wouldn't have --- early on ---- discussed how many people could be killed by it. Yet T. would have us believe that he did a generous thing by calling it off at the last moment. If it were true that he was not told, he should have fired all the members advising him for their incompetence, but instead he prefers to throw them under the bus so he can "look good."

          I know that I have had more time than usual to stew on this stuff, so thanks for reading this far -- I've said nothing for weeks, and now this. So, before sharing the two photos at the end of this post, here is a shout-out to other people who have had the "no weight bearing allowed" experience like I have had. And also here are some stories.
           It seems there are friends and family who had it and didn't complain loud enough at the time for me to hear them clearly, like my son, his son (age 8!), my college friend (Liz), my Martha's Vineyard friend (Patty), a local friend (Ginny), the manager of the Rowan County Arts Center (Ashley), my niece, and more. Patty had 8 months of not bearing weight, Ashley was a teenager who chose not to follow advice well so she went swimming with her boot, etc. (She now admits that was a very bad idea.) My niece has two small children and a demanding full time job but also family support.
           I've been hearing additional stories, usually from strangers of all ages who simply saw my boot and shared about how hard it had been for them. I know I got off easy, but by now I really know it. I could drive! I have insurance! I had help from family and neighbors and friends! I had many fewer obligations than I did when I was younger! And so forth. (BTW, I no longer have my boot, which I call my very own story starter.)

          I do want to share two photos today, because they are light-hearted and fun. Humor is essential, no matter our circumstances. 

       First, I've known this sweet rescue donkey for many years, but somehow I didn't pay attention to his name, until yesterday. (By the way, these photos have NO political meaning, honest.) Say the name aloud to figure it out:

Meet DonKeyOatey!
     Then, second, as a companion photo, there's this friendly moment during a walk that I once took in Alsace, France, with the youngest daughter of the French family I had lived with for a year in high school as an exchange student:

        with kisses and brays to you all -- Ann

Monday, June 17, 2019

June flowers and falls

post #436
         The news is that I've taken up walking again, because my foot is better! I even took my camera out for a kind of spin in the last few days. I am very rusty with it!  Even so I want to share here some of my restart moments. They include a drive to southeast Kentucky, with time at friend's farm there and at the amazing nearby Cumberland Falls. 

This ATV took us through the woods -- since I still am being careful in my walking.

We were stopped so that the others could walk to this waterfall, but I couldn't join them yet.  photo by Beth Ducot 

         The next two photos show the blooming mountain magnolia -- It was amazing to learn about this beautiful and elusive bush. Or is it a tree? I made these photos without a tripod or much time. But you get the idea. 

a lovely daisy in a field of grasses and flowers, designed to nurture butterflies and birds

flowers in the garden surrounding the house belonging to the Farm House Inn:

looking out through the upstairs screen, framed by the chimney

          Later we went to Cumberland Falls State Park. These are the falls that boast a moonbow every month when the moon is full.  Of course the weather has to provide a clear sky at the same time -- always a fascinating place despite my not being able this time to do the walking to the bottom of the falls.

photo by Beth Ducot, from below the falls


A FOOT NOTE, so to speak.... For a week or so in May I was able to enjoy my purple toes inside, and the purple wisteria just outside the closest window.  I had fun imagining some kind of cosmic connection.  My purple pain is now over (YEA,) as is the wisteria (BOO.)


Next week: the cohosh story